Fast-tracked licencing to boost summer trading in Kensington and Chelsea

Published: Monday 27 July 2020


Businesses in Kensington and Chelsea will be able to find out within 10 working days if they are granted permission for outdoor seating, after new laws have been passed in parliament.

The Council is introducing new, fast-tracked pavement licences for pubs, restaurants and cafes so they can add outdoor tables and chairs to serve more customers safely, as the borough bounces back from the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses can apply for furniture where the street is wide enough to allow for safe social distancing. A new law passed in parliament this week will allow statutory consultation for new pavement licences to last just one week, rather than the 28 days previously required.

There is also a new temporary licence to make use of parking spaces where it is safe to do so. This has already had 12 new applications from businesses in its first week, with the pavement licences receiving two new applications just this weekend.

Cllr Cem Kemahli, lead member for environment, said:

“We’ve already taken steps to close some roads to attract visitors back to our famous shops, markets and restaurants. It’s been encouraging to see businesses adapting and behaving responsibly to keep customers safe.

“These new laws mean we can crack on with helping businesses to bounce back quickly. By creating more al fresco dining spots, more of us will be able to safely enjoy the elements of life we’ve been missing for the last few months.”

As the borough finds a new normal, the new rules are designed to protect lives and protect livelihoods, with customers able to dine out safely and control the spread of coronavirus.

The new licences are:

  • Seasonal Highways Licence: temporary Licence for street furniture in suspended parking bays. 
  • Pavement Licence: temporary Licence that allows business to place tables and chairs on pavements and closed roads. 

For more information or to apply, visit